Best Lunch in Washington

Power Lunch Or Midday Meal? Try These Top D.C. Lunch Venues

Lunch can be the trickiest part of the day to plan in Washington, D.C. If you are a tourist, you want to be near where all the best attractions are located because there is already a lot of walking involved when you visit. If you work in the district, many factors must go into your decision. Is this a meal to discuss business deals? Are you going to have enough time? Will others be joining you?

The decision can be a bit daunting but fear not because 10Best is here with our top lunch picks in the nation's capital. We decided to pick from a wide range of venues because tastes can vary from day-to-day.

For those looking for power lunch spots, head to Old Ebbitt Grill which has hosted tourists and politicos since 1856. Chef Fabio Trabocchi opened Fiola in 2011 and it remains one of the hottest restaurants in the district.

If you are looking for a quick bite to eat that packs a lot of flavor, you will love sandwich shop Bub and Pop's. For those with dietary restrictions, The Little Beet is the perfect spot to grab a refreshing salad.

Whether you are looking for a midday meal or a chance to discuss business, Washington, D.C. has a number of lunch venues to fit the needs of everyone.    





& Pizza
Photo courtesy of &Pizza

With multiple locations throughout the D.C. Metro area, this business is a favorite among locals. With a goal of 'connecting a taste of the future with a feel for the familiar,' & Pizza offers a unique menu of signature pizza dishes including gnarlic, farmer's daughter, Grecian market, backyard garden and maverick. Chose from different doughs, sauces, spreads and cheeses for a fabulous meal. Be sure to check out their housemade soda selection including pear and fig elixir, ginger berry lemonade, and dark cherry cola. Save some room for their pizzelles – Italian waffle cookies in vanilla and chocolate.

Recommended for Lunch because: Whether finding a spot for a group to eat or just looking for a delicious individual meal, pizza is always a pleaser.

Gina's expert tip: Several of the D.C. locations are open after the bars close on weekends so head in to refuel after a night out.

Read more about & Pizza →

There is just something about a bowl of warm soup and ramen that feels like home. Taiwanese cuisine reigns supreme at this H Street NE venue featuring ramen and dumplings. Try Toki classic, Taipei curry chicken, vegetarian, red miso ramen. Pick your choice of beef, pork, seasonal vegetable, chicken, or seasonal seafood dumplings that may be either pan-fried, fried or steamed. $5 will get you a half a dozen. Sides include cold tofu and kimchi. Wait times to get inside tend to be long, so chose their delivery service Caviar to have the restaurant come to you. Be sure to call ahead for reservations if you plan on dining-in during a busy time. METRO: Union Station.

Recommended for Lunch because: Prices vary for different dishes at this restaurant but taste and flavor are always excellent.

Gina's expert tip: The restaurant is closed on Sundays so be sure to go during the weekdays or Saturday.

Read more about Toki Underground →

With an atmosphere of relaxed elegance, this steakhouse features dry-aged steaks, fresh seafood and an enviable wine list that contains more than 350 selections. Start your meal with some savory appetizers like fresh oysters on the half shell or steak tartare. Luncheon salad entrees like Cobb salad with sliced tenderloin and Maine lobster salad, will fill you up but leave plenty of room for dinner at home later. Chef's suggestions such as roasted swordfish and sliced finger mignon are also not to be missed. Some menu items are designed to share including parmesan truffle fries and Sam's mashed potatoes but after sampling them, you may want them all for yourself! METRO: National Gallery

Recommended for Lunch because: Whether it is a power lunch or wanting a great meal, this spot is sure to get you ready for the rest of the day.

Gina's expert tip: Join their "Insider" list to get exclusive recipes and first notice of special deals.

Read more about The Capital Grille →


If you need a break from shopping at Eastern Market or are just looking to refuel during a pit stop, this eatery is the place for you. The venue regularly has long lines of people waiting to get inside. Don't be deterred! The line moves pretty fast as food comes out quickly. Take your pick of charbroiled burgers, oyster sandwiches, soft shell crabs and fish sandwiches. If you make it here early enough, breakfast is not to be missed. Patrons order at the counter and then find an open seat at a communal table. METRO: Eastern Market

Recommended for Lunch because: Shopping can be draining so refuel at this Eastern Market restaurant gem.

Gina's expert tip: Since you are eating at a communal table, take the opportunity to put down your phone and make some new friends!

Read more about Market Lunch – Capitol Hill →

Blue Duck Tavern
Photo courtesy of Blue duck tavern

You'll find this American fare restaurant tucked inside the luxury Park Hyatt Washington, D.C. hotel. Soft lighting, an open kitchen and unique handcrafted wood furnishings throughout give the restaurant a warm, contemporary feel. With a concept of serving "simple, rustic food with an artisan approach," the lunch menu features a mouthwatering selection of salads, meat, poultry, fish, vegetables, potatoes and grains. As a way to recognize the farmers who grow and raise ingredients for their menu, names and/or locations are provided on the menus for each course. METRO: Foggy Bottom

Recommended for Lunch because: Simple, unique dishes sourced from regional farms are not to be missed.

Gina's expert tip: If you are in town for the holidays, be sure to check out their seasonal menus for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's.

Read more about Blue Duck Tavern →


With a focus on modern interpretations of traditional French bistro fare, this restaurant is where Capitol Hill dines out. Patrons will find a warm yet sophisticated atmosphere upon their arrival including a tiered dining area and a bar ready to make classic French cocktails. Power lunch meetings often take place here as guests enjoy savory entrees include the Bis burger, salmon Normande, trout l'ardennaise, crab cakes and the salad grecque. The brunch menu is worth getting out of bed for on the weekend with selections like the risotto au pistou, quiche Lorraine and tuna salade Nicoise. METRO: Union Station

Recommended for Lunch because: Giving traditional French fare a modern twist makes this restaurant a winner.

Gina's expert tip: Parking can be an issue during lunch time. Might want to just take the Metro here.

Read more about Bistro Bis →

The Little Beet
Photo courtesy of The Little Beet

Eating out can be difficult for individuals with dietary needs but this New York-based chain restaurant has menu options for all. With a focus on local, seasonal and natural ingredients, customers can indulge in a number of dishes at this establishment and not have to feel guilty at all. Don't believe me? They have nutritional and allergen information on their menu items available with a few clicks on their website. Folks can create their own plate of protein while adding warm or cool sides such as golden cauliflower, sweet potatoes and chilled sesame broccoli. Their rolls and bowls are always a lunch hit with options like chipotle chicken, miso chicken and poke.

Recommended for Lunch because: Lunch can be fast-paced but your health doesn't have to take a back seat thanks to this dietary friendly spot.

Gina's expert tip: Be sure and try their cold-pressed juice selections like Feelin' Green and Little Beet.

Read more about The Little Beet →

Opened in 2011, this much buzzed about restaurant is Chef Fabio Trabocchi's first in D.C. With a modern upscale vibe, this venue changes menus every day to reflect the freshest ingredients available for its regional and contemporary Italian cuisine. The menu includes selections of pasta, meat, fish and salads. If you are looking to make more healthy choices, look at the Maria menu Monday through Fridays which offers three courses of Mediterranean style dishes that are low on sodium, calories and fat. The bar offers its own lunch menu called PRESTO! where guests may choose a select beverage and entrée for one price. METRO: Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter.

Recommended for Lunch because: Offering outstanding lunch choices in the restaurant and in the bar makes this outstanding restaurant a midday winner.

Gina's expert tip: The venue is closed on Sundays.

Read more about Fiola →

Bub and Pop's
Photo courtesy of Bub and Pop's

We all love the fancy restaurants and big-name chefs in the district but sometimes you just want a meal from a good ole' mom and pop shop. This sandwich venue is where you should head to for menu items that are hand roasted, carved, stuffed and patted. While some restaurants may only put a few slices of meat inside a sandwich, Bub and Pop's does not. Each sandwich comes with a mountain of meat that will make you wish you could unhinge your jaw. Try their cheesesteaks, tuna melt, fish hoagie and Pop's beef brisket in half or whole portions. Don't leave without trying their kettle-cooked potato chips and dip.

Recommended for Lunch because: A mom and pop sandwich shop that packs big flavor into hearty sandwiches.

Gina's expert tip: Check out their Facebook page for daily menu features.

Read more about Bub and Pop's →

When Presidents Grant, Cleveland, Harding and Teddy Roosevelt were in need of libations, they came to here. Established in 1856 and boasting of being Washington, D.C.'s oldest saloon, the restaurant features Victorian-styled rooms perfect for tourists, locals and politicians. The upscale American lunch menu is sure to appease with great choices like the grilled swordfish, trout parmesan, chicken Milanese and butternut squash agnolotti. Be sure to check out their menu devoted solely to oysters. The dress code is anything goes so it is perfect for Washington elite along with tourists stopping for a bite to eat just steps from The White House. METRO: Metro Center.

Recommended for Lunch because: Many of history's most famous faces have dined at this restaurant and the tradition continues today.

Gina's expert tip: Check out the decor as many items are reproductions that could not be salvaged from previous locations.

Read more about Old Ebbitt Grill →


Meet Gina Gallucci White

Gina Gallucci White is an award winning freelance writer with articles appearing in such regional publications as Frederick Magazine, The Daily Record, Montgomery Magazine and The Gazette. She...  More About Gina